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Used Cars: A Requiem

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Crystanomoly

It is with profound sorrow that I announce that my lengthy relationship with the used car has come to an end. My “Wee Beastie” has incurred at least half of its purchase price in repair bills. Despite the nature of the repair the amount due to the mechanic has consistently amounted to $1500.00; give or take a dollar. While I was once able to jest that if this kept up I would eventually have a new car, the checks became harder and harder to write. I realize that car repair is complicated work but I just can’t keep pouring money into my beloved money pit.
To date my car developed some form of lameness that could have resulted in the wheel breaking away from the axel: that was unsettling. I tried to ignore the disconcerting “thump” with each turn of the wheel. Finally, a sense of impending doom insisted I address this issue, and quickly. Total repair bill: $1500.00, give or take a dollar.
Next my car was discovered to have leakage. I justified that many of us do over time. However, given the fact that the oil was dripping from the oil pan, the predicament became less humorous and more ominous. My poor Beast was gutted and the mechanic discovered the source of the problem. During the design process of my particular model of vehicle, some engineer decided that it was appropriate to run the drive shaft through the oil pan. Nothing much could be done for this issue short of reverse engineering or time travel back to the development of this model. I was advised to purchase an additive to use with each oil change that would slow, but not eliminate the problem. Consequently, my car gets frequent transfusions. Total repair bill: $1500.00, give or take a dollar.
Recently my car surprised us with a breathtaking case of hypertension. We were getting ready to leave for church. My husband started the car and the oil pressure gauge soared immediately into the red zone. My husband switched off the car and tried it again. Once again my car showed a pressure that would have blown the head off of a human. Turning to my husband I suggested that perhaps the car had somehow manufactured reserve oil to compensate for the leak. My husband was not amused.
Research on this problem sounded the death knell of my poor, poor “Wee Beastie.” The problem could be caused by several things. Unfortunately, the diagnosis would involve terribly invasive surgery on the innards of the car. Terribly invasive surgery comes at a high price and my insurance coverage probably doesn’t cover automobile hypertensive disorder. This was looking increasingly grim by the minute.
After a discussion on our options it was determined that the best course of action would be for me to buy a new car. My husband is well aware of the nearly fatal reaction I have to car notes. He provided me with an answer that solved the problem. We had a little mad money squirrelled away in an account for this sort of eventuality. Happily the money would cover the purchase of the car with a little left over for the repair of the Beast.
 You may wonder why we plan to resurrect my dear companion. The reason for keeping the Beast is that we have horses and everything about horse keeping is large; large animal, large food, large equipment. While gas efficient, the car I have in mind, is not equipped to haul firewood or large horse accessories. The Beast will be relegated to the utility feature of its SUV designation. We’ll see each other frequently and it will enjoy the pleasures of semi-retirement. Once we purchase its stable mate we will initiate treatment for its skyrocketing hypertension. After all, it’s served me well and I can’t bring myself to abandon a friend in need. I’m probably the cause of its elevated oil pressure. However, I know the eventuality of this procedure as well as the back of my hand. Once the problem is corrected and the mechanic hands me the bill for the repairs, I’ll know the amount without even looking. Total repair bill: $1500, give or take a dollar.